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PBS News Hour

News/Business. Gwen Ifill, Judy Woodruff, Jeffrey Brown. (2013) New. (CC) (Stereo)

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Us 26, Boston 17, Texas 10, China 8, U.s. 7, Suarez 5, India 5, America 4, Brown 3, United States 3, Warner 3, Oklahoma City 3, Illinois 3, Jim Yong Kim 2, Margaret Warner 2, David Boeri 2, Dr. Kim 2, Nasa 2, Pbs Newshour 2, The F.b.i. 2,
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  PBS    PBS News Hour    News/Business. Gwen Ifill, Judy Woodruff,  
   Jeffrey Brown.  (2013) New. (CC) (Stereo)  

    April 18, 2013
    5:30 - 6:30pm PDT  

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captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions >> brown: a massive explosion at a fertilizer plant devastates a small texas town, leaving entire blocks near the blast in ruins. good evening, i'm jeffrey brown. >> suarez: and i'm ray suarez. on the "newshour" tonight, we get the latest from west, texas where the death toll is uncertain, scores are injured and the frantic search for survivors continues. >> i walked through the blast area, i searched some houses earlier tonight-- massive, just like iraq, just like the murrah
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building in oklahoma city. >> brown: then, the f.b.i. released photos of two suspects in the boston bombings. we update the investigation, as the president and first lady attend a prayer service in the city to mourn the victims and offer words of hope. >> even when our heart aches, we summon the strength that maybe we didn't even know we had. and we carry on; we finish the race. >> suarez: hari sreenivasan reports on the increased use of drones here at home, amid growing concerns about privacy and their use down the road. >> brown: a new path to citizenship for the country's 11 million un-documented immigrants was unveiled today by a bi- partisan group of senators. margaret warner talks to one of them, dick durbin of illinois. >> suarez: and we sit down with the head of the world bank, jim yong kim, about his new push to tackle extreme poverty around the globe. >> brown: that's all ahead on tonight's "newshour." >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by:
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♪ ♪ moving our economy for 160 years. bnsf, the engine that connects us. >> and by the alfred p. sloan foundation. supporting science, technology, and improved economic performance and financial literacy in the 21st century. >>nd with the ongoing support of these institutions and foundation and... >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you.
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>> suarez: rescuers worked in wet weather today to find survivors amid the rubble from the fiery explosion at a texas fertilizer plant last night. late today, authorities acknowledged there were fatalities but declined to confirm how many. earlier estimates ranged from five to 15 though there were reports the toll would go much higher. the cause of the fire and explosion is still not known; officials said today there's no evidence of foul play. a man using his cell phone captured the moment last night when the west fertilizer company plant exploded. that flattened buildings within a five blocks radius and sent shockwaves out for miles around. >> i was actually picked up and thrown about ten feet. i was standing by the end of my
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bed and then where i landed was by the bathroom, about ten feet closer into the house. >> i turned around and watched the explosion as it happened, and it threw me down into the bed of the truck. next thing i know, shrapnel was falling down everywhere, burning all of us, and we just got out and ran. >> suarez: the thunderous blast occurred in the town of west, texas, a small farming community of 2,800 people that lies about 20 miles north of waco. today rescue workers continued to search the smoldering rubble for survivors. waco police sergeant william swanton. >> the number one priority is to rescue and save lives in the event we can do that. the number two priority is to make sure there are no further injuries and nobody else gets hurt. >> suarez: swanton added that cold, rainy weather had helped extinguish fires and keep concerns over chemicals in the air at bay. >> there is no lingering threat. i think again, the weather has kind of helped us with that. it has obviously dispersed some of the smoke.
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at this point, i have been told that is not a concern. >> suarez: the explosion destroyed at least 75 houses, a 50-unit apartment complex, a middle school and a nursing home from which 133 patients were evacuated. first responders and local residents described a terrifying scene. >> as soon as i ran up there was a woman holding two babies, and they were soaked in blood, and one of them, one of the babies looked like it wasn't responding. it's just horrible to see something like that. >> suarez: for texas trooper d.l. wilson, the aftermath was reminiscent of another fertilizer explosion-- the 1995 bombing of the murrah federal building in oklahoma city, 18 years ago tomorrow. >> i can tell you i was there, i walked through the blast area, i searched some houses earlier tonight-- massive, just like iraq, just like the murrah building in oklahoma city. same kind of anhydrous exploded
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so you can imagine what kind of damage we're looking at there. >> suarez: what caused the plant to catch fire and explode is still unclear. officials are treating the area as a crime scene and say they'll await reports from the bureau of alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives. >> there is no indication of crime at this point from what i'm made aware of. that is what we will investigate. the a.t.f. will investigate, the state fire marshall will investigate to determine if in fact there was some type of crime there. >> suarez: what is known is that at around 7:30 yesterday evening the west fertilizer company plant caught fire. local firefighters-- many of them volunteers-- responded and immediately began evacuating the area. about 25 minutes later, the spectacular blast occurred, knocking out windows miles away. first responders quickly set up a triage station at a football field to treat the injured while
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others searched for survivors. beds were set up at nearby high school for those who couldn't return home. >> last night was truly a nightmare scenario for that community. >> suarez: today texas governor rick perry asked texans and all americans to keep the people of west in their thoughts and prayers. >> in a small town like west, they know that this tragedy has most likely hit every family, it's touched practically everyone in that town. >> suarez: perry is asking the federal government to declare a state of emergency for mclennan county, in which west lies. for more about the tragedy in texas, we are joined from west by b.j. austin of kera public radio. b.j., is the fire out? is the scene under control? are emergency service personnel able to answer the area where the blast occurred?
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>> we really don't know if the fire is completely out. that was briefing about an hour ago and that question was asked and the official -- the sheriff, deputy -- chief deputy sheriff of mcchren unanimous county said he did not have knowledge of that nor did a state trooper jason reyes who was also conducting the briefing. so we're not exactly sure. i did have a conversation with a state representative who this morning was able to tour the site and the neighborhood and he said that it's gone. it's -- the plant is no more. >> suarez: has anyone been recovered in an area close to the blasts in the last several hours? >> officials are being very, very careful with this whole thing of recovery, of discovery and whatever and they're backing off of any earlier numbers of possible fatalities that they were given. they said they're doing this in
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respect of the volunteer firefighters and the citizens of west. they want to be extremely diligent and extremely careful before they say anything about the exact number of fatalities and the exact number of injured. we've heard anywhere on injured from 170 and the state representative told me he thought it was closer to 200. >> well, as everyone working on the presumption that there are going to be a lot more than the five to 15 that was earlier announced by law enforcement. >> it may seem that way but we just don't know. they're not tipping their hands with this at all. the state representative did tell me when he toured the site he was amazed at the level of damage done to the neighborhood homes. he said they weren't blown over like a tornado, they were blown up with the walls blowing outward.
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he said it looked like a war zone. >> suarez: you had an enormous fire then catastrophic explosion. is there a chemical smell in the area? when you're downwind from west does it smell like you're near a chemical plant that has some serious trouble? >> i have to tell you, where i am right now the only smell you smell is cows. we're right next to a cattle yard. i really don't know. the area is so blocked off, not even people who live there within a two-mile radius can get there to check the damage of their homes or get their prescription medicine or clothing or anything. everyone is being totally kept out of the area at the direction of the a.t.f., the alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives folks. >> suarez: in the core area, is there material on site that poses a danger either from fumes or from burning? >> we asked that question at the
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briefing about an hour ago and got an evasive answer tha all state agencies including the texas commission on environment quality are on site, they are monitoring and they are ensuring that the public is safe and that's all they would say. >> is this a plant that's had safety problems or regulatory problems in the past? >> we do know from comments made by the suspect of education that a couple of months ago in february possibly the plant did a controlled burn of some lumber and trees that were on site and they did a controlled burn and they asked that the intermediate ya school nearby be evacuated while they do that controlled burn but other than that that's the only thing or concern issued one gentleman cannot return to his home, the blast burned his
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windows and doors off, he tells me he's had concerns about possible chemical contamination but he never thought there'd be an explosion and he said he never really pursued those concerns but he did have them. >> suarez: ammonium nitrate is a commonly used fertilizer. is this an agricultural area of texas? is west a logical place to have a plant of this kind? >> yes, indeed, it is. and the plant has services all of the farmers and ranchers in this central texas area around west and one person told me that it's been there a long time and that a lot of things have just grown up around it. a lot of houses, apartment buildings and the school have just grown up around the plant. >> suarez: b.j. austin of kera in dallas, thanks a lot for joining us. >> you're welcome. >> brown: still to come on the "newshour": the f.b.i. releases images of two suspects in the
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boston bombing investigation; excitement and concern over domestic drones; the senate's bi-partisan push on immigration and the head of the world bank's focus on poverty around the globe. but first, the other news of the day. here's hari sreenivasan. >> sreenivasan: a mississippi man was charged today with threatening president obama and a u.s. senator by allegedly sending them tainted letters. paul kevin curtis was arrested yesterday, but maintains he is innocent. lab tests confirmed a letter sent to mississippi republican senator roger wicker contained ricin. and the f.b.i. confirmed the deadly poison was also in a letter mailed to the white house. both were intercepted at off- site mailing facilities. if convicted, curtis could face up to 15 years in prison. flooding became a problem for people in the upper midwest today, as rivers overflowed their banks. at least nine states are experiencing flooding or will soon. and the u.s. army corps of engineers announced it's closing part of the mississippi river to commercial navigation starting tomorrow. heavy rain fell across the region, making the flooding worse. and in chicago, a sinkhole opened up on a street on the
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city's south side and swallowed three cars. a former justice of the peace has been charged in the killings of a north texas district attorney, his wife, and an assistant prosecutor. eric williams has been in jail since saturday for making terror threats related to the case. the murdered officials prosecuted williams for computer theft last year. he was later convicted and lost his elected position. his wife, kim williams, was charged in the murders yesterday. she confessed to taking part but insisted her husband was the gunman. experts gathered by the world health organization arrived in china today, ahead of a weeklong investigation into a new strain of bird flu there. so far, they are unsure how it is spreading to humans. the h7n9 virus was identified three weeks ago. since then, it has killed 17 people and infected 70 others, including many who never even had contact th birds. in this country, the centers for disease control and prevention
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said it was working closely with china to figure out the strain. >> the virus is still only found in six provinces or municipalities in china so there's no cases outside china. we think we might see a traveler come to the from china and get sick in the united states. we're preparing for that. >> sreenivasan: the team of international experts plan to visit the most affected areas of the country -- shanghai and beijing -- as well as chinese laboratories testing the virus. the portuguese government pushed ahead with new spending cuts today to the tune of $1 billion this year. the new money-saving measures are deeply unpopular, but necessary in order to meet deficit targets portugal's creditors set out two years ago. the cuts will reduce spending on public sector staff, goods and services that have already been slashed in previous rounds of cuts. portugal's unemployment rate is already above 17%. on wall street today, a slew of
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disappointing corporate earnings reports sent stocks slipping. the dow jones industrial average lost 81 points to close at 14,537. the nasdaq fell 38 points to close at 3,166. nasa scientists announced the discovery of two new planets that appear to be capable of supporting life. the distant planets are 1,200 light years away, orbiting a star in the constellation lyra. one light year is almost six trillion miles. the discoveries mark a milestone in the search for life on other planets. the find was made possible by nasa's kepler telescope. those are some of the day's major stories. now, back to jeff. and to the latest on the boston bombing. a short time ago, the fbi held a news conference. gathered and analyzed thousands of tips... and come up with images of two persons of interest... suspects who may have planted devices near the finish line of the marathon. here's an excerpt. >> today we are enlisting the public's help to identify the two suspects. after a very detailed analysis of photo, video, and sore
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evidence we are releasing photos of these two suspects. they are identified as suspect one and suspect two. they appear to be associated. suspect one is wearing a dark hat. suspect two is wearing a white hat. suspect two set down a backpack at the site of the second explosion just in front of the forum restaurant. we strongly encourage those who were at the forum restaurant who have not contacted us yet to do so. as you can see from one of the images suspects one and two appear to be walking together through the marathon crowd on boylston street and the direction of the finish line. that image was captured as they walked on boylston in the vicinity of the intersection with gloucester street. as you can see, the quality of the photos is quite good but we will continue to work on additional images to improve their identification value. further.
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on fbi.gov we have photos of the suspects. the photos and videos are posted for the public and media to use, review, and publicize. for clarity, these images should be the only ones-- i emphasize, the only ones-- that the public should view to assist us. other photos should not be deemed credible and they unnecessarily divert the public's attention in the wrong direction and create undo work for vital law enforcement resources. for more than 100 years the f.b.i. has relied upon the public to be its eyes and ears. with the media's help in an instant these images will be delivered directly into the hands of millions around the world. we know the public will play a critical role in identifying and locating these individuals. somebody out there knows these individuals as friends, neighbors, co-workers, or family members of the suspects. though it may be difficult, the nation is counting on those with information to come forward and provide it to us.
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no bit of information, no matter how small or seemingly inconsequential is too small for us to see. each piece moves us forward towards justice. it's extremely important to contact with us any information regarding the identities of suspect one, suspect two, and their location. we consider them to be armed and extremely dangerous. no one should approach them. no one should attempt to apprehend them except law enforcement. let me reiterate that caution. do not take any action on your own. if you see these men, contact law enforcement. if you know anything about the bombings or the men picture here please call the telephone listed on the photo arrays, that's 1-800-225-5324. all calls will be kept confidential. we have also established a web site for tips that directly relates to the bombing. please contact us at
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www.boston john mir thantip the photos can be viewed on our web site fbi.gov. for it is important to emphasize the images from mongd are indelible and the horror of that day will remain with us forever. >> brown: we're joined from boston by david boeri of wbur public radio. david, that was an extraordinary news conference. no description of the suspects other than the color of the hats they were wearing. they just decided to put it out there for the public. >> that's right. and this is an example, jeff, if ever there was one of narrow casting. they didn't make the description they put it out there, they tell people they don't want to know about anybody else, any other photographs or video except that that pertains to these two. it is an extraordinary technique yet they want to know more.
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they want to know as much as they can find out about these two people. tellingly, that video showing the two men together walking toward the finish line on boylston has a time stamp on it of 2:37 in the afternoon. just eight minutes later the explosions took place. >> brown: now, we're showing our audience the video. you had a chance to look at it earlier. but they said -- if i heard it right they had one suspect early on, yesterday, i think, then they took their time and found a connection to the second one. tell us about that. >> yeah, i mean, there is -- you just played the press conference and mr. deslauriers of the f.b.i. took very few questions afterwards so what he said was we developed a first suspect then as we were going along we developed a second one. now i think people will agree that suspect number two is much more identifiable. he has a goatee. he has that hat turned backwards.
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so logos, interestingly, on both hats are hard to see and i think that's because that's video that's been time snapped to make photos of it it, so it's a little blurry. but he is much more identifiable. i would say they're in their mid-20s. profile number one is in shadow wearing the dark glasses, harder to see. it's not clear whether he has any facial hair but that's what they have and the forum is the restaurant next to the starbucks which was just devastated on its front side by that explosion. so he wants -- mr. delawyer jay asking anybody with any information from those places if they recognize these people to contact the f.b.i. >> suarez. >> brown: as best we know linkage between the two is just that from that video of them walking together at one point? >> they're associated together a couple of times, that's right. i do not think they know really
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-- they don't know who these people are it would seem. there's very little information about them. by the way, the interesting thing about boston, though, is this idea of narrow casting and broadcasting a photo has been very successful. in 2011 on the 21st of june in 2011 the f.b.i. released photographs of catherine grieg who was the associate of the notorious mobster fugitive james "whitey" bulger. that was on the 21st. within, i'd say, 36 hours of that broadcast there was somebody in sant monoa a said said we recognize her and on the 23rd bulger and grieg were in custody. so it's an effective technique that's been used by the f.b.i. here before. >> brown: i was wondering how unusual this was for them to go before this route but they're saying it has happened there before and ato wre the -- do we know where these images came from exactly? it goes what you and i talked about the other night about the number of videos and photos that
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were coming in. >> right. they were looking for surveillance cameras. there was one surveillance camera high on a roof that was thought to be very critical here. it turns out it didn't come from there. so it's not clear where they came from. very little information here. what's interesting to me, though, is yesterday was a day of complete confusion, the f.b.i. made no statement, nobody made any satement. i believe they had a photograph or some of this yesterday, they chose today to release them after the president has been to boston and left the city. >> brown: david boeri of wbur, thank you once again. >> you're welcome. >> brown: later, mr. obama spoke >> brown: and as the investigation continues, so too the mourning. as we heard, president obama came to boston today to attend a memorial service for victims of the bombing. hundreds lined up before dawn this morning, hoping to secure one of the 2,000 seats in boston's roman catholic
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cathedral of the holy cross. tight security blanketed the area and many were turned away. >> we have to live, we have to go on with our lives. we don't know why things happen and it could be any on eof us and i know we just pray and we just stay strong with each other. >> when i see stories, i get really sad, really sad. it bothers me on so many levels, but boston is tough. this city is tough, we'll get through it. >> brown: inside, prominent politicians, including massachusetts senators elizabeth warren and mo cowan and former governor and presidential candidate mitt romney, joined in honoring the bombing victims. mayor thomas menino, who missed the marathon because of a broken leg, praised boston for its strength in the face of the tragedy. >> nothing can defeat the heart of this city. nothing. nothing will take us down because we take care of one
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another. even with the smell of the smoke in air and blood on the streets, tears in our eyes, we triumphed over that hateful act on monday afternoon. because this is boston. a city with courage compassion and strength that knows no bounds. >> brown: six religious leaders spoke. reverend nancy taylor of boston's old south church, located near the race's finish line, recounted the sacrifice she witnessed monday. >> from church's tower, this is what i saw that day. i saw people run toward not away, toward the explosion. toward chaos. the mayhem, toward the danger. making of their own bodies sacraments of mercy. >> suarez: violinist yo-yo ma
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accompanied the boston children's chorus. ♪ and governor deval patrick linked the state holiday on monday to america's values. >> how strange that the cowardess unleashed on us should come on marathon day on patriots day. an attack on our civil ritual, like the marathon, especially on patriot's day is an attack on those values. and just as we cannot permit darkness and hate to triumph over our spiritual faith, so we must not permit darkness and hate to triumph over our civic faith. that cannot happen and it will not. >> brown: before the service, president obama met with the family of krystle campbell, one of three killed. and in addressing the gathering, he sought to comfort the unnerved city. >> after all, it's our beloved
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city, too, boston may be your home town but we claim it, too. your resolve is the greatest rebuke to whoever committed this heinous act, if they sought to intimidate us, to terrorize us, to shake us from those values the values that make us who we are as americans. well it should be pretty clear by now that they picked the wrong city to do it. ( applause ) not here in boston, not here in boston. and that's what you've taught us boston, that's what you reminded us, to push on, to pervere, to not grow weary, to not get
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faint. even when it hurts, even when our heart aches, we summon the strength that maybe we didn't even know we had. and we carry on; we finish the race. >> brown: later, mr. obama spoke with members of the st athletic association at a nearby high school and visited with victims and staff at massachusetts general hospital. >> suarez: and we turn now to the subject of drones-- small unmanned aerial devices outfitted with surveillance equipment can be bought by virtually anyone and flown legally throughout the country. as hari sreenivasan reports, the tiny aircraft are triggering a large debate over acceptable
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uses of domestic drones and privacy. >> oh, my gosh. wow! look at that >> sreenivasan: on a sunday afternoon, an hour's drive outside the nation's capital, the skies were filled with drones. not the lethal military killing machines we've heard about overseas but unmanned aerial vehicles or u.a.v.s of all shapes and sizes that are legal and flown in the u.s. today. it was a fly-in by 40 members of the d.c. area drone user group. washington resident timothy reuter is the group's founder. it has nearly 300 members. >> we have a lot of people who are interested in photography. we have some long-time engineers. some who even work professionally on drone projects. you have long-time r.c. flyers. and then you have people like myself who have no engineering background, have never done this before, but are excited by this as a new technology and just want to get started and find a community of people to work
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with. >> sreenivasan: communities like this have popped up all over the country. these aircraft are not supposed to fly higher than 400 feet and must stay within the operator's line of sight. and like all u.a.v. are not allowed to fly around major airports. most of the users here are strictly hobbyists, but reuter says many of them have business plans. there's only one problem. >> the big restriction is you can't charge money for what you're doing. the f.a.a. has deemed it safe enough for us to fly, but for some reason it's not safe enough to charge for that same exact flying. so we're doing some community service projects in the area, working with the local park to make promotional videos from the air of some of their trails as and that's where were fitting in. >> sreenivasan: but the expanded use of u.a.v. to include commercial applications may be on the way in the united states. in 2012, congress passed a law requiring the federal aviation administration to come up with a plan so that commercial and privately owned drones could be authorized to share the national
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airspace by 2015. last fall, a report from the u.s. government accountability office said the majority of these drones would weigh less than 55 pounds and fly below 400 feet. and the f.a.a.'s latest aerospace forecast predicts that once the rules are in place, 7,500 small unmanned aerial systems will be in commercial use in five years. in fact the agency is already permitting some to operate in u.s. skies. as of february, there were 327 active certificates that authorize drone flights by public entities. they've been used to monitor natural disasters such as flooding, or even hot spots in forest fires. universities are experimenting with drones to monitor crops or vineyards. and law enforcement agencies are using unmanned aerial vehicles in border patrol operations >> unmanned systems bring a tremendous potential to help human beings do those dirty,
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dangerous, difficult and dull jobs. >> sreenivasan: michael toscano is president and c.e.o. of the association for unmanned vehicle systems international-- a leading industry group for the unmanned systems and robotics community. >> these are commodities. they are an extension of the eyes, ears, hands of human beings. well that human being, that man or that woman, knows how to do their job better than anyone else. what you're giving them is a tool that allows them to have better information to make smarter decisions. >> sreenivasan: in march, toscano's organization released a study looking at the potential economic impact of the unmanned aircraft industry. if the f.a.a. integrates unamanned aerial systems into the airspace by 2015, the report projects 70,000 new jobs in the u.s. by 2018. by 2025 that number could grow to more than 100,000 jobs. the industry group says other nations are already moving ahead with domtic unmanned aerial vehicles. in spain, engineers equipped u.a.v.s with 3-d imaging systems
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to create detailed maps of buildings and monuments. costa rican scientists have used drones to monitor one of the country's volcanoes. in nepal, small unmanned aircraft with video cameras are flown above national parks to combat animal poaching. protestors in eastern europe used a drone to get a bird's eye view of the situation on the ground. but here in the u.s., the storm clouds of legislative battles tied to privacy concerns are looming on the horizon. according to the national conference of state legislatures, so far in 2013, there are at least 39 states that have 80 bills pending related to unmanned aerial systems, most would limit u.a.v. activity. just last week, idaho governor c.l. "butch" otter signed a bill restricting the use of drone aircraft by police and other public agencies. the potential widespread use of drones isn't just spurring conversations at the state and local level. last month, the senate judiciary committee convened a hearing
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titled "the future of drones in america." vermont senator patrick leahy wasn't only carrying paperwork when he walked into the hearing. the committee chair was holding a small drone aircraft, showing off the device that weighs a mere two pounds to ranking member chuck grassley of iowa. >> just in the last decade, technological advancements have revolutionized aviation to make this technology cheaper and more readily available. >> sreenivasan: similar to state and local governments, chief among the committee's concerns: privacy. amie stepanovich was one of the witnesses who testifd before the committee. >> the privacy laws that do exist are very targeted, the approach that the united states has taken to privacy, and they don't encompass the type of surveillance that drones are able to conduct, and because of >> sreenivasan: stepanovich works at the electronic privacy information center or epic, a non-profit in washington d.c. >> we want to see legislation that addresses aerial surveillance as a whole. that doesn't necessarily look at what technology is available on the market now, but what could
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be available, what has been available and addresses that in a way that's not going to be out-of-date in a couple of years. >> sreenivasan: last month, epic petitioned the bureau of customs and border protection to suspend its domestic drone surveillance program, citing a lack of privacy regulations. the group has also urged the f.a.a. to address privacy and transparency concerns as the agency works toward opening the national airspace to u.a.v.s. >> transparency is incredibly important because it's something that can be done relatively easily. and actually right now you have all manned pilots, manned aircraft are registered. and that registry is publicly accessible. with drone aircraft, you don't have the same repository. it's very difficult to determine what's out there. what surveillance equipment they carry. and we want to make sure that people are aware of what they're subject to. >> sreenivasan: neither privacy advocates nor u.a.v. enthusiasts are confident that the f.a.a. will meet its required deadlines. putting the future of domestic
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drones up in the air. >> suarez: how close are we to having drones peer in our windows? get some perspective on our world page. >> brown: next, a big move on a long-controversial area: immigration. margaret warner has our look. >> warner: after months of negotiations, a bipartisan group of senators formally rolled out a sweeping immigration overhaul today. the gang of eight's bill would establish a pathway to citizenship for the estimated 1 million undocumented people currently in the country. the process would take 13 years and applicantsould have to pay a fine and back taxes, learn english, and pass a criminal background check among other hurdles. but before that system can even be set up certain security goals must be met, including improvements to the border fence.
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one member of the group, senator lindsey graham of south carolina said failing to change the nation's immigration system would be economic suicide >> the only way america loses is to do nothing. and to those people who believe that we don't need legal immigration in the future, you're in denial about the demographics. and to those who say this costs more to take people out of the shadows and put them a legal status where they pay taxes, you've certainly lost me. that makes no sense. >> warner: for more now we turn to illinois democrat dick durbin, the majority whip in the senate sand a member of the so-called gang of eight. welcome, senator durbin. you all have been working on this non-stop since the start of this congress. how hard was this to forge this compromise? >> this wasn't easy. you know, you have eight willful members of the u.s. senate-- four from each party-- each with a point of view and we came
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together determined to put together a comprehensive immigration bill task which has eluded other senators in the recent past. we got it done. it's an 848 page bill. it's a good offering, a way to improve this immigration system in a lot of different facets. >> give us a flavor of what was it was like in that room. i gather you had something like 24 meetings. >> well, there were nice kind and quiet meetings and more eruptive meetings. as i said today to john, i said mount mccain erupted a few times but fortunately no one was injured and we got back on path in a hurry. so despite the strong feelings that we each brought to this issue-- because it is so important to each of us and to our country-- i think at the end we struck a good balance. >> pelley: as you referenced, back in 2007 there was also a bipartisan push for immigration reform. just this week we saw proposals on gun legislation which had bipartisan backing and wide
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public support go down to defeat. what gives you reason to believe or hope that this one may be different? >> well, i've never been on a stage at a press conference announcing a bill which richard trumpka, the president of the a.f.l.-c.i.o. and grover norquist. it's the most unusual coalition of business and labor, conservatives and liberals, religious leaders, leaders from all walks of life who have come together to back this bill. i think we've got a chance because it is so bipartisan and has such a bad base of support >> warner: so you think it's more than the fact that 70% of hispanic voters chose president obama in the november election? >> make no mistake, that was the catalyst. if the november 6 election hadn't been so decisive when it came to voting blocks like asian americans and hispanic americans favoring president obama i'm not sure my republican colleagues would have had the appetite. john mccain has been very open about this and he said if the republicans want to be
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competitive with hispanic voters in america we've got to step forward and find a solution to our immigration challenge. >> now have the eight of you discussed not only the substance of the bill but how each team of you is going to deal with challenges from your own caucus? >> we haven't gotten into particulars. we could is certainly to this and my work as senate whip, i do it everyday where we break out members of each caucus and each approach to make sure they understand the bill but in fairness they took this to their own caucus, we took it to ours and we opened it to question. on the democratic side, as you might expect, there was a more positive response but i still feel very hopeful we'll have a substantial number of republican senators. >> several of you at today's press conference talk about how you would welcome amendments but not amendments you felt were designed to kill the bill. how is that actually going to
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work? in other words, are you committed to working together as a group to actually meeting and saying this looks like a bill killer to us and always voting as a block? >> we haven't spelled that out because we haven't seen the amendments. once we see them we'll be able to measure them as to whether they're friendly amendments to improve the bill or designed otherwise. now there are four of us-- chuck schumer, myself, lindsey graham and jeff flake-- on the senate judiciary committee where this bill will be considered. we're having our first hearing tomorrow, then another one on monday come after the may recess will come back in the first week of may with an opportunity to go through markup. >> warner: but you've worked now with these seven other senators very closely for the last three, four months. do you think each one is committed and ready to vote against amendments offered by members and the maybe more ideological end of their caucus? the people they consider friends
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and colleagues and who represent constituencys that remember the gang of eight also has to worry about? >> you put your finger on the biggest challenge. when you have a brokered compromise that really tries to strike a balance and then you open it to amendments i know they're going to be some heart breaking vote there is. there were things that if i were an independent on this issue and not vested in this process i'd gladly vote for them. i'm sure the same is true on the republican side but we've got to measure which amendments go too far, destroy the balance. it's going to be a tough balancing act. >> one element -- there's been a lot of focusing on one the bill does for and to people who have been here illegally but it also represents quite a shift, wouldn't it, in who's admitted here legally in the future? >> yes, there's several aspects to this. first, we're talking about people who come in for specific jobs or specific purposes. the h-1bs and so-called specialized people who are brought into the united states. we think of them in the high
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tech industry but it really is across a broad spectrum of possibilities and employment. then we have other jobs related to seasonal workers, agricultural workers and the like. so each of those has a different program but there's one common theme: in every one of these instance it is job has to be offered to an american first and it has to be offered at a wage that's fair. if the american fills the job, so be it. forthe unemployment rate is n this country is too high you can't bring in foreign workers. so we're trying to set up a system that gives the american workers the first opportunity the highest preference. >> warner: quick final question. president obama came out this week and said he supports this bill. do you want his active involvement in this? do you need his active involvement or is it better to have him stand back and let you all handle this? >> a few months back when the president was headed to nevada to talk about immigration, the sunday before he left he was on
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the one with chuck schumer and me and we talked for a few minutes and he said "all right, i won't put a bill on the table, i'll give you the chance to move forward. but i've learned a lesson watching congress, i'm not going to wait forever so get on to it and get it done." and we have. the president has been encouraging us. he supports comprehensive immigration reform. i know he'll do whatever it takes to help us pass this bill but he's committed to it personally. >> warner: senator richard durbin of illinois, thank you very much. >> thank you. >> suarez: in the fourth in our five-part online series, we catch up with jesus garcia, an activist we first interviewed about immigration rerm in 2006. what has and hasn't changed in the last seven years? you can also read a primer on the legislation. that's at newshour.pbs.org. >> brown: finally tonight, ending extreme poverty around the world by 2030. that's the ambitious goal announced by world bank
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president jim yong kim. the world bank has come under strong criticism at various times since its founding in 1944 including, as it happens, by kim himself. an american born in south korea, skim a doctor, a leading global health advocate and winner of a so-called macarthur genius grant. in the late 1980s he demonstrated against world bank policies even calling for its end. last year picked by president obama he became the bank's chief after serving as president of dartmouth college since 2009. i talked with dr. kim at world bank headquarters in washington this morning and began by asking what's new in his goal of attacking poverty. >> we feel the fact that there's still 1.2 billion people living in absolute poverty, which is less than $1.25 a day, is a stain on our collective conscience. >> suarez: a stain? >> a stain. over the past 25 years we've
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made progress. we've gone from 4% of the people living in absolute poverty to 21% today most of that was because china grew so rapidly. but now the tough work remains. what we're seeing is a 1% a year drop in global poverty but what's going to happen is that that curve will flatten out dramatically and what we're saying is we now need to bend that arc downwards and really end poverty and it's going to take a lot of effort to reach this target. >> brown: give us a concrete example of what would you now do differently. >> so what would you do in india differently if you're committed to ending povr any well, i visited a state called uttar pradesh that has over 200 million people. 8% of the people living in absolute povr poverty in the world live in uttar pradesh. so in our plan for india we're going to focus much more of our effort in the poorest states
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where the poor people live. >> brown: is there an implied or explicit critique of practices of the world bank and other institutions in the past? you yourself were once one of those who demonstrated against or protested against the world bank. now here you are heading it. >> and i think it's an indication of how much things have changed back then i was part of a mutual called 50 years is enough where we thought the 50th anniversary you should just shut down the world bank. >> brown: who needs it anymore? >> but now it's changed. we were not at the forefront of climate change or insisting on gender equality in development programs 15 years ago. we are through there now. it's a different organization and we are united around this goal of ending poverty. >> suarez:. >> brown: could you have imagined yourself 15 years ago heading this organization? >> not 15 years ago. >> suarez: one of the critiques i've seen from some in the development country that you're still focusing on growth as a
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way to bring everybody up and not enough on the inequalitys that exist within many societies including many of the more developed societies. >> the second part of the target which is boosting shared prosperity, this is new for the world bank. what we're saying is every year we'll let countries know the extonight which the bottom 40% of income earners are participating in economic grow. inther words we'll measure the extonight which growth is inclusive. that's new and very powerful. >> brown: you're going to tell how much the bottom is behind the top? >> we've been specific about it for years. is we believe that the evidence shows us and certainly arab spring countries have shown us this that if you had g.d.p. growth without inclusion you're building instability into your societies and we feel that the
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evidence is overwhelming that putting women at the center is smart economics, that's what you should be doing. so we're going to measure growth we're going to measure participation in growth, we're going to measure poverty but the things that you need to do to get there are varied and what we know is that if you don't invest in health, education, social protection, you're not being very visionary about what it's going to take to grow your economy in the future. that message is very strong and i think people are hearing it from us. >> brown: does this require new money? you're making this at a time of slow growth in much of the world. negative growth in europe, for example. what do you need from other countries and how would you get it at a time like this? >> official development systems which is the money donor countries give, it's not $125 billion a year. let's look at one country. india. i was just back from india. they have a $1 trillion infrastructure deficit other the next five years so there's no
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way that official development systems is going to be enough to tack this will problem. this is one of the great strengths of the world bank group. we not only work in the public sector with development assistance but we make direct investments, we make loans. it's going to take a major effort at bringing public and private together if we're to have any chance of meeting these targets. >> brown: are you afraid that the world might fall backwards? there's been strides in the last couple of decades with china and other countries with poverty. we've had a number of years of slow growth. are you afraid we might be moving backwards? >> we remain cautiously optimistic about what could happen in the future. we know developed economies have to grow in order for to meet our targets in the developing economies but the growth in the developing economies has been one of the good news stories over the last five years. more than 50% of the growth globally has come from the developing economies and this year they'll grow at 5.5%. many of those countries that
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make tough decisions around fiscal consolidation, around investing in health and education they could lay the foundations for future growth. >> brown: one of the questions as you gather here is whether the world bank is relevant anymore, right? you had a number of countries that have grown and made great strides. there are other areas where they can seek investment now. what's the case for the continued relevance of the world bank? >> brazil, russia, india, china, south africa, the most high profile middle income countries the experience that i've had in going to each of those countries is that they don't want less of the world bank they want more of the world bank it's not so much they need our money but our expertise and it's our very specific ability to work in the public sector, in the private sector and we also provide political guarantees. so if you make an investment in
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a country and that company's nationalized we provide insurance which is helping people to feel comfortable making the investments in developing countries that are needed. we've had 66 years of experience. we've gone through so many different conflicts in order to get to a place where the 188 member countries agree on where we should go and agree about the fundamental relevance of the world bank group there will always be a need for our knowledge and ability to work across public and private sectors. there will always be a need for us as a neutral agent in a very contentious environment. >> brown: let me ask you finally about you personally. because world bank presidents to this point have traditionally been political backgrounds from economic backgrounds, financial backgrounds. you're a doctor, you've spent your life in public health. what do you bring to this that is different? >> for almost all of my adult life i've been working in the
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area of development. i've worked in haiti, the slums of lima, peru, i've worked in the former soviet union countries. i've worked in siberia. so i have been doing development my entire life and the world bank is a development bank. our focus is on trying to help lift people out of poverty and to boost prosperity that's shared and that's essentially what i've been doing all my life as an anthropologist and physician so i have beenrying to fight poverty my whole life and what i found that inside the world bank we are just full of passion that people in the world bank want to end poverty. that's why they came to work at the world bank and because we share such fundamental values, we hope that we can be ever more effective in the years ahead. >> brown: all right, world bank president dr. kim, thanks for talking with us. >> brown: dr. kim has also promised a strong new effort to combat climate change, especially in the developing world.
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you can find that part of our conversation, online. and again, the major developments of the day: the f.b.i. released photos and video of two male suspects in the boston marathon bombings and asked for the public's help in identifying them. and the area around a fertlizer plant explosion in west, texas was still dangerous, due to authorities would not say how many fatalities there were. and a correction before we go, earlier in the program i referred to yo yo ma as a violinist. hold your letters, please: he is, of course, one of the world's great cellists. >> suarez: and online with hari. >> sreenivasan: the authors of a new book, "the chosen few: how education shaped jewish history," suggest that an emphasis on literacy helped jews forge a legacy of intellectualism and economic prosperity. find that on our making sense page. and learn why china and the u.s. have agreed to step up dialogue about climate change on our
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world page. all that and more is on our website newshour.pbs.org. ray? >> suarez: and that's the "newshour" for tonight. i'm ray suarez. >> brown: i'm jeffrey brown. thank you and goodnight. >> major funding for the pbs newshour has been provided by: >> and with the ongoing support of these institutions and foundations. and... >> this program was made possible by the corporation for public broadcasting. and by contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. captioning sponsored by macneil/lehrer productions captioned by media access group at wgbh access.wgbh.org
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